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40 Watt Sun
40 Watt Sun
The Inside Room (Metal Blade)
by Scott Deckman
If you're a little slow to get up in the morning and feel like your blood is as thick as maple syrup, you might like 40 Watt Sun and their debut album The Inside Room. This London band shines like a dim star, their one gear a slow, propulsive, concussive motif.
Like a more metallic '10s update on early-'90s shoegaze, 40 Watt Sun sounds like the bastard three-way of Kevin Shields, Peter Murphy, and half of Seattle circa '91. This is some thick, wall-of-sound stuff.
It may seem odd to call a five-song album an album, but I will when four out of the five songs are nine minutes-plus (the first two are more than 10 and a half minutes long!). Each song features down-tempo rhythms, sludgy guitars and the kinda dirge that makes rainy days seem de facto. Trashcan-sounding drums punctuate the haze. Whatever you think of Garbage, at least they made being depressed sound fun.
The songs on The Inside Room sound so similar as to be almost comical. That doesn't mean it's shite, exactly, it only means that 40 Watt Sun play depressive-friendly music extraordinaire: Mood music for the blackest and bleakest of days. With his thick English brogue and accompanying din, it's hard to make out what singer Patrick Walker is saying, actually, but he sure sounds like he's longing for something.
The sonics here are impressive enough, but I wonder what Walker would do with a girlfriend or run of good luck? Ah, who cares, it's only rock'n'roll.